The Manor, a well-known trio from London, may have been stuck in lockdown along with the entire British population, but that hasn’t stopped them from climbing their way up the ranks in the music industry. By recently adapting from a grime and garage tone, to trying out the genre of indie and rock, the trio are experimenting in their music more than ever and they have no plans to stop!
The Manor are preparing to make a huge return after lockdown, promising new tunes for their new and returning fans. In this exclusive interview, we talk to The Manor about life in lockdown and what the future holds.
How would you describe the effect lockdown has had on you guys as a band?
Danny: We had quite a big summer planned as we had a quiet summer last year, and we were one of the first shows to get cancelled when coronavirus started to spread in Europe. It was obviously massively disappointing; however, we haven’t been some of the worst people hit.
Johnny: Other than that, the first part of lockdown was nice as it was a chance to reset and chill-out. Out of boredom, we did start to think of new business ventures, and now we are coming out of lockdown with more ideas and more things to do next year than we had at the start, so that’s the positive.
Scotty: We’ve recently just released the new single, ‘All Goes Cold’, that was made during a random day at the studio and was a song we have always loved, but everyone involved in our music has said they love the song but they don’t know where it sits. However, I guess the fact that the music industry closed down for a bit gave us more freedom to release something a bit more experimental than we normally would, so that’s a huge positive. The cool thing that people don’t really see is that the video was shot in line with social distancing regulations, as we shot it ourselves, so there were a lot of positives out of lockdown.
Johnny: We also ended up doing one of the best videos we’ve ever shot, in terms of conceptually, for ‘All Goes Cold’ as a result of being shot in lockdown. It ended up fitting the mood and was therefore very timely and positive.
Speaking of ‘All Goes Cold’, it’s a very political song. Why is it important for you to address serious issues, such as social injustice, in your music as a band?
Danny: Generally speaking, we don’t try to make the band too serious or political (which doesn’t mean we don’t have these kinds of views), but we’ve always tried to provide a bit of light relief from this, and everyone already knows what we stand for I imagine. We talk a lot about what goes on in our community and our lives, but by large, our message has always just been “The Manor is For Everyone”. We are more about trying to show you how to have fun and be unified, rather than tell you exactly what you should be doing. It’s more a lead by example.
Scotty: We also don’t shy away from personally expressing our views, but in our music, we address a more unified message and try to provide an escapism from all of the issues. Everywhere you look there is some sort of negative political news and a lot of it is important, and as much as we like to show support for what we believe in, we do like to try and provide a respite from all of this in our music.
“Don’t take life too seriously, don’t take yourself too seriously when things are going bad. Don’t get too ahead of yourself when things are going great. Stay balanced.”
What inspired you to adopt an indie/rock sound in your latest single?
Johnny: Normally when we do higher temp garage stuff, we don’t get to say as much as we want as it can be a little bit more restricting writing wise, whereas with indie you’ve got more freedom, especially lyrically, so you can get more out of it song-writing wise which is why we want to go down that route even more. Whatever song we produce of whatever genre, as long as people can tell it’s ‘The Manor’ then that’s what we hope for.
Scotty: The culture that indie music represents is also quite close to the culture we stand for and a good proportion of our fans are primarily indie fans due to the kind of lifestyle we promote.
Danny: At one gig when we did an Arctic Monkeys song at the end a few years back, it was like the maddest we had seen our fans go, and so we realised they liked indie and we have to take into account what our fans want, as well as what we like to write.
Is there a message you wish to send to your fans through your music?
Scotty: Don’t take life too seriously, don’t take yourself too seriously when things are going bad. Don’t get too ahead of yourself when things are going great. Stay balanced.
Is there anything else you’d like to add about your future plans, or anything you would like to address to your fans?
Johnny: We want a number one album so we need your help! We need to get it to number one. The album is on the way and instructions will follow!
Listen to The Manor here.